In between the stress, the lack of security, and the sudden loss of contact with the world writ large, it's fair to say that losing your phone is a horrible feeling. In fact, I'm willing to bet there's nothing worse in the entire world than losing your phone, and I say this as someone who has both accidentally eaten pushpins as cereal and watched every episode this season of Community. But I've been through this before, and maybe we can turn my pain into wisdom. Here's what you have to do right away if you lose your phone.
Maybe you were mugged. Maybe you clumsily dropped it into the toilet. Maybe you were pushed into a pool with it in your pocket. The fact is, your phone is gone. And now, you have no choice but to avenge it. Hunt down those muggers, vigilante-style. Take a sledgehammer to that porcelain bowl. And push that friend into a pool. A pool of LAVA. They probably have those around where you live, right?
Get caught up on podcasts at your house
The best way to listen to podcasts is during a walk, but if your phone is gone, the only way you'll be able to listen to podcasts is at home, through iTunes. That means you're stuck inside, with your computer, listening to these long, long, episodes. And yeah, you might go a little stir crazy, looking at those four walls for such a long time. You might start feeling like you're in the garbage compactor scene in Star Wars. You might even begin to suffer from cabin fever and begin to think there is no longer any outside world at all!
Granted, if you do start feeling that stir-crazy, you could always pause what you're listening to and go outside yourself for a minute but you KNOW how hard it is to get back into an episode of Radiolab once you take a break!
Shout at the sky
Shouting at the sky is a good way to get some of the bad feelings off your chest. Here are some example phrases I shouted at the sky after I lost my phone:
— "This isn't fair!"
— "Don't I have enough to deal with already?
— "Am I eligible for an upgrade through my service provider? Because that would be really great timing if I were! I don't even know how that works really! Am I still on my mom's plan or what?! If I get a new phone does that mean she won't get a new phone when the contract runs out? Because I do want her to get a new phone! She has this really old Android thing and it's just kind of bad! Anyhow, I'd just like a little more information, is all!"
— "Why did this happen to MEEEEE?!"
Look around and experience where you are
Listen, I've had an iPhone for years — my head's been titled at a 45 degree angle ever since. Now that your phone is gone, you can look up, look around! Who knows where you might be! What if you're in nature? Look at the sunlight, peeking through the trees! What if you're around your friends? They want to interact with you! (Assuming they lost their phones as well.) What if you're in a zoo? The animals can talk to you! In fact, they could always talk to you. You just could never listen.
Just sit down and cry in a Burger King
Since it's only natural to want a good cry — and hey, don't feel bad about it, this is a hard thing — I suggest doing it at a Burger King. Why? Because maybe it'll inspire some of the other patrons at Burger King to have themselves a good cry as well. And they definitely need one, too. That's why they're at a Burger King.
Realize that you're more powerful than even the entire universe
Yes, you had something taken from you, and it wasn't fair. The universe can do whatever it wants to us, it can take our health, our stability, our youth, our relationships, and yes, even our phones. When you think about it, the universe can knock us down whenever it wants to. But we, as human beings, have one counter-move — we can always get back up. The universe doesn't win unless we let it, and even though you've lost your phone, and your contacts, and banking information, and photographs, you can still carry on. No matter how many times it knocks us down, the one thing the universe can never stop us from doing is getting back up. And that makes us stronger than the universe. When you look at it that way, losing a phone isn't so bad after all, is it?
Hey, has anyone seen my wallet? I could've sworn I had it in that taxi ca... that is it. Whatever, I'm just going to go be alone in my room for the next six months.
What do you do when you lose your phone? Let me know on Twitter at @mikeyfromsu or in the comments below!